Collaborating with historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs) and minority-serving institutions (MSIs), Florida International University's Knight Foundation School of Computing and Information Sciences is establishing a Center of Excellence in digital forensics. A $2.25 million grant from the U.S. Army Research Office will help fund the center, called the Forensic Investigations Network in Digital Sciences (FINDS) Center of Excellence (COE).
Serving as a research hub, FINDS COE will tackle critical challenges within the field, ultimately hoping to develop advanced technologies that government agencies and departments.
“The FINDS COE will create a novel analytical cyber forensics framework and develop leading edge technologies to address several hard research problems such as video authenticity and network forensics with comprehensive approaches,” said Cliff Wang, chief of Network Sciences and program manager for Information Assurance at the U.S. Army Research Office. “The proposed research will definitely advance the state of art in digital forensics fields and bring out new capabilities of which the U.S. Army can take advantage.”
But not only will the center serve as a research hub, it will provide students with a pathway into working for the Department of Defense and other government agencies. Plus, by partnering with HBCUs and MSIs, FIU Distinguished University Professor S. S. “Ram” Iyengar, the principal investigator and director of the FINDS COE, says it will help those institutions gain access to needed resources while also promoting successful programs and practices at those institutions.
The center expects to train more than 100 students over the course of five years. Collaborating schools include the HBCUs Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, Grambling State University and Jackson State University, with FIU as the center’s lead institution.